Bill to Loosen Child Labor Laws Sent to Walker

May 11, 2017

Child Labor

The GOP-controlled legislature has given final approval and sent to Republican Gov. Scott Walker a bill that would loosen child labor laws.

Assembly Bill 25 removes the requirement for 16- and 17-year-olds to obtain permits signed by a parent or guardian in order to work. The measure was approved on a party line 20-12 vote on Wednesday in the Senate after passing the Assembly last week.

AB25 drew support from tourism and business groups and opposition from the state AFL-CIO.

Support for the bill was led by Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC), the state’s largest business group, which has spent more than $18.6 million since 2010 on undisclosed, outside electioneering activities to support Republican and conservative legislative and statewide candidates.

In addition to outside spending to influence elections, more than a dozen other influential special interests represented by WMC, including tourism and business, contributed $16.7 million to current GOP legislators and $33.2 million to Walker between January 2011 and December 2016.

In 2011, Walker signed into law a provision in the 2011-13 state budget which eliminated restrictions on 16- and 17-year-olds working more than 26 hours during a school week and more than 50 hours a week during vacations.